Arsenault, Robert - Syncopation demonstration | Bowing Down Home
RA – Robert Arsenault
KP – Ken Perlman
RA: What the basic pattern is, it’s what I call the rock and roll rhythm. A rocking rhythm needs two beats to rock. You need two beats to rock. Like it’s a dance rhythm. So you need one beat to make you rock and another to make you rock the other way.
A rolling rhythm is just a rhythm that rolls.
So you make that rhythm roll in a two beat rhythm pattern. Then you’ve got a rock and roll. So you take a tune like St. Anne’s Reel. Play the same reel and do your music lines over a two-stroke rhythm and instead of doing…
Vocal Demonstration (with syncopation)
You get your phrases going in a two-beat rhythmic pattern but you are still playing the same notes. Playing the exact same notes but you are regrouping those notes in a two beat rhythm phrase. You do that and you get a rock in roll. I’m not that good at it but here it is.
Demonstration: St. Anne= Reel
KP: Are you doing two upstrokes in a row?
Plays Bow Strokes
KP: Are you letting up a little on the bow [on the downstroke] so it doesn’t sound so much?
RA: That’s pretty much what happens, yeah.
KP: You’re letting up on the bow and it sounds like it’s continuous with the preceeding up-stroke.
RA: Yeah. I think if you were to write it in classical [notation], you’d have the four sixteenth notes, on the second note would be your accent.
KP: But the third is funny, because it exists and yet it doesn’t exist.
RA: That’s right. It’s there but it’s not accented. The accent is really on the second and the fourth [notes].